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HAUNTED - Movie Review : Just made to encash the 3D + Horror combination and nothing else. (Review By Bobby Sing)

09 May, 2011 | Inspired Movies (Alphabetical) / H / Movie Reviews / 2011 Releases

If you are a die-hard fan of the Horror genre and have seen the famous classic scary films coming from the World Cinema, then HAUNTED might be a kind of amateur attempt for you. And in case you haven’t seen all those brilliant films and are only familiar with the Ramsay kind of Horror Cinema famous in our part of the world, even then HAUNTED is not going to impress or entertain you greatly with its monotonous kind of content and execution.

Vikram Bhatt, the director, after tasting marginal success with his last few horror films, sticks to the genre and comes up with another from his stable in 3D. But in simple words, it is a film which has been made with the sole motive of taking the maximum advantage of its Horror + 3D combination and has got nothing more than the routine, seen before stuff to offer its viewers. The film starts off in a laid back manner and the pace doesn’t pick up even after its initial hour. So the viewer doesn’t really feel the excitement and thrill of watching a horror movie in its first half. Post intermission, it falls back on the routine path, adding a weird kind of plot of moving back into the time-space (some 80 years back), which actually falls flat in absence of an electrifying execution.
In fact the time-travel remains the weakest part of the movie as it is neither explained properly to the viewer nor treated with the right kind of thrill and competence. For instance, the hero easily finds his places to live and spend days in, after moving back in time to the year 1936 and nobody cares who he is and from where has he come with a completely different kind of clothes, looks and style. Moreover he also reaches back in the present, just like that in the end without any proper build up and clarification.
Further, as usual HAUNTED is haunted by the ideas and visuals earlier seen in many other horror movies, which once again put it in the category of inspired movies. Starting with the same ages old plot of a haunted mansion, the film has at-least one novel plot of having two spirits in the palace instead of one. There is an evil spirit of a Piano teacher in the house who has captured another spirit of his own girl-student, whom he used to love. Now for 80 long years the spirit of the girl is being tortured by the other spirit in the house and therefore the palace has become a haunted one from many decades.

Moving ahead, the script once again has a psychic healer who is called upon but runs away looking at the powerful evil. Then there is a Sufi saint who gives the real life saving instructions to the couple giving them a bottle of pure water. There also happens to be a Father of the Holy Church who does his own prayers to save the couple but gets killed by the spirit too. As per its plot based on one sided love, the film also has scenes of an invisible spirit raping the girl, as earlier seen in “THE ENTITY” and our own version of it called “HAWA” featuring Tabu. And on top of all, the climax once again has a scary but blessed well (reminding you of the cult flick “RINGU”) as if nowadays no horror movie can be made without showing a dark black well in its end which saves everyone from the evil.
So content wise, I didn’t find HAUNTED having anything new in its 2.15 hours of lengthy duration. With a crispier edit of less than 2 hours, it could have been an ok one time watch. Performance wise too, I didn’t find anyone great other than a fine act by Tia who has got both talent and on screen presence visible on the celluloid. In fact I liked the girl and her cute smile even in her early days of T.V performances and would love to see her soon in some reputed projects. Mahaakshay tries too hard and he simply reminds me of Dev Anands’s son who also tried hard in films but later decided to quit. My best wishes are with Mahaakshay but he seriously needs to give it a second thought for sure. Achint Kaur is good and so is Arif Zakaria in their haunting roles. The musical score in the film is pretty weak and actually songs should not have been there in the first place. Even the background score doesn’t transform you into a scary world, which happens to be one of the most important requirements of a horror project.
However, technically the film has been worked upon, which clearly shows and its 3D effects are well supported by its first rate Cinematography. But still I found the 3D scenes, which at once reach out to you, quite less than what was being expected. Though the sudden attacks of spirits does scare you at times but its not a hugely scary movie at all even in its 3D avatar.
In the end, I would only like to say that as being publicized, HAUNTED is not the first Hindi 3D horror movie made in Bollywood. More than 25 years back we had a Ramsay film called “SAAMRI” released in 3D in the year 1985. And to be very straight, I still remember that we all (then students) immensely enjoyed the movie with its purely magical, scary scenes in 3D and a likable background score, much - much more than the current HAUNTED. So now the decision to watch it or not, is all yours.
Ratings : 1.5 / 5

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09 May 2011 / Comments ( 4 )
A Desai

I have not seen Haunted but do remember Saamri very well. Apart from scary shots, Saamri\'s comedy scenes were pretty enjoyable in 3D. I still remember wonderfully created titles in 3-D.

However, it was my gut feeling that Haunted will not be as good as Saamri.

Bobby Sing

Hi A. Desai,
Yeah, I too remember enjoying SAAMRI a lot .......And frankly speaking watching a 3D movies at that time in single screen theaters with so many people around and then trying to take those funny glasses home secretly was great fun......Cheers!

i think the time-travel part very slightly resembled the Christopher Reeve movie \'Somewhere in Time\' where the protagonist gets obsessed by a old photograph of a lady and travels back in time to be with her and help her...and abruptly and accidentally returns to the present when his work is done
Bobby Sing

Hi Tabish,
I will sure look into this and let you know.
Keep writing in.



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